Learning how important it is to keep the homeowner informed.

At a job meeting the heating contractor who was replacing the boiler and piping informed us that he had not included the removal of the existing boiler or steel piping in his quote.  After the meeting, the contractor and I went to the basement and looking at the pipes and boiler, the contractor suggested that he could, at no charge, include cutting the old system into lengths which one of my men could take to the recycle and the metal would probably bring enough money to cover our labour costs, thereby no cost increase to the owners.

Later, one of the owners confided that she was disappointed I had not fought for her on the piping removal issue.  A light went on for me!

From experience, I found that going head to head with specialty contractors is not productive. Now, I privately discuss issues with the contractor, asking questions instead of making demands - asking for help. The contractor invariably comes up with an excellent solution in minutes if not seconds. From now on I plan to get news of specialty contractor solutions to the owner ASAP so that the contractor receives appreciation and also the owner will increasingly come to trust getting solutions with peacible, face-saving methods.

Stephen Lentz, general contracting over twenty years and still learning!